Dismantling Diasporas : Rethinking the Geographies of Diasporic Identity, Connection and Development book cover
1st Edition

Dismantling Diasporas
Rethinking the Geographies of Diasporic Identity, Connection and Development

ISBN 9781138546714
Published February 5, 2018 by Routledge
222 Pages

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Book Description

Re-energising debates on the conceptualisation of diasporas in migration scholarship and in geography, this work stresses the important role that geographers can play in interrupting assumptions about the spaces and processes of diaspora. The intricate, material and complex ways in which those in diaspora contest, construct and perform identity, politics, development and place is explored throughout this book. The authors ’dismantle’ diasporas in order to re-theorise the concept through empirically grounded, cutting-edge global research. This innovative volume will appeal to an international and interdisciplinary audience in ethnic, migration and diaspora studies as it tackles comparative, multi-sited and multi-method research through compelling case studies in a variety of contexts spanning the Global North and South. The research in this book is guided by four interconnected themes: the ways in which diasporas are constructed and performed through identity, the body, everyday practice and place; how those in diaspora become politicised and how this leads to unities and disunities in relation to 'here' and 'there'; the ways in which diasporas seek to connect and re-connect with their 'homelands' and the consequences of this in terms of identity formation, employment and theorising who 'counts' as a diaspora; and how those in diaspora engage with homeland development and the challenges this creates.

Table of Contents

Contents: Introduction, Elizabeth Mavroudi and Anastasia Christou. Part I Constructing and Affecting Diasporas: Theatrical translations: the performative production of diaspora, Lizzie Richardson; Diasporic reconnections through food, Maria das Gracas Brightwell; Narratives of belonging: the Moroccan diaspora in Granada, Spain, Robin Finlay; Disharmonious diaspora: African migrants negotiate identity in Britain, Naluwembe Binaisa. Part II Dividing and Politicising Diasporas: Battlespace diaspora: how the Kurds of Turkey revive, construct and translate the Kurdish struggle in London, Ipek Demir; Identifications with an 'aesthetic' and 'moral' diaspora amongst Tamils of diverse state origins in Britain, Demelza Jones; Reconfiguring diaspora identities and homeland connections: the Tibetan 'Lhakar' movement, Fiona McConnell; KOMKAR: the unheard voice in the Kurdish diaspora, Bahar Baser. Part III Using the Diaspora: Re-Conceptualising Diaspora and Development: Unpacking 'Malaysia' and 'Malaysian citizenship': perspectives of Malaysian-Chinese skilled diasporas, Sin Yee Koh; Exploring the dynamics of diaspora formation among Afghans in Germany, Carolin Fischer; Returning diasporas: Korean New Zealander returnees' journeys of searching for 'home' and identity, Jane Yeonjae Lee; Helping the homeland? Diasporic Greeks in Australia and the potential for homeland-oriented development at a time of economic crisis, Elizabeth Mavroudi; Engaging the African diaspora in the fight against malaria, Ben Page and Ralph Tanyi; Geographies and diasporas: an afterword, Alison Blunt. Index.

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Anastasia Christou is Associate Professor of Sociology at Middlesex University, UK and Elizabeth Mavroudi is Lecturer in Human Geography at Loughborough University, UK.


’This timely new book revisits and reinvigorates the study of diaspora by unpicking the seams of political and power divisions as well as the affective and performative dimensions of diaspora belonging and identities. With a particular emphasis on intersections with development studies, the richly ethnographic case studies examine both the ordinary everyday practices as well as the broader processes that merge and juxtapose the experiences of here and there, roots and routes.’ Loretta Baldassar, The University of Western Australia, Australia ’Dismantling the narrative of community, Christou and Mavroudi speak to the constitution, imagination, affectivity, development and discontinuities of diaspora as a multiple, fluid place making process. Not only a contribution to geography, this edited volume speaks to the multiple disciplines within diaspora studies. Contributors map identifications, networks and displacement processes within diverse multi-scalar transnational social fields of unequal power.’ Nina Glick Schiller, University of Manchester, UK and Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology, Germany ’As a postmodern study of the instability of diaspora boundaries this volume raises important issues. The best of its wide range of contributions prove the fruitfulness of interdisciplinary conversations between geographers and anthropologists, sociologists and historians.’ Pnina Werbner, Keele University, UK